Buffalo Sabres GM Search: Brad Treliving

Bruce Bennett

Our next profile in the Sabres ongoing GM search focuses on Phoenix Coyotes assistant general manager Brad Treliving.

He's a recent entry into the Buffalo Sabres search for a new general manager, but Brad Treliving's name has been linked to Buffalo quite a bit in the past few days.

Treliving is currently in his seventh season as the assistant general manager in Phoenix, where he also manages their minor league clubs. The 44-year old doesn't have the Stanley Cup winning resume that some of his peers do, but Treliving does bring executive experience, having served as the president of the Central Hockey League for seven seasons prior to joining the Coyotes.

Over the past few seasons, Phoenix has earned a reputation as an organization that generally makes smart trades, takes their time developing prospects, and usually gets more from their team than seems possible on paper, especially when you consider the quagmire that's been their ownership situation over the past few years.

Treliving has earned high praise from his peers in Arizona, as ESPN's Craig Custance writes, including head coach Dave Tippett.

"Crazy work ethic," Tippett said of the Coyotes assistant GM. "His commitment to doing the job right is phenomenal. Sometimes you just scratch your head and say, 'Brad, take a break here.' He’s all-in all the time."

"You look at our situation and the budgets we were dealing with, it's hard to make mistakes," Tippett said. "A guy like [Rob] Klinkhammer is a great example. [Treliving] sniffed this guy out and said this guy would be a great fit for how we play, and he's been great for us."

As far as drafting goes, our own Coyotes blog, Five for Howling, ranked the five best and worst draft picks in Coyotes history, and Treliving came out on the right side of that count 2-0. Their recent picks haven't seen much NHL time yet, so it's tough to judge, but Treliving's second draft resulted in Oliver Ekman-Larsson, who has turned in to a very nice defenseman for Phoenix.

For their part, the Coyotes might not want to part with their long-time assistant GM, as TBN's John Vogl notes today:

Treliving, who is also vice president of hockey operations and GM of the Coyotes’ minor-league club, helps in all personnel decisions and manages the amateur and pro scouting staffs. It’s not clear if Buffalo has asked for permission to interview Treliving.

"Brad is a very, very important person in our organization," Phoenix GM Don Maloney said. "We’d have to think very long and very hard about granting permission during the course of a season."

Phoenix just extended Treliving's contract this summer, so it might take some cajoling for Buffalo's president of hockey operations Pat LaFontaine to even convince the Coyotes to talk with Treliving, let alone convince him to move his family from Arizona to Western New York.

What do you think of Buffalo adding someone from the Coyotes management tree to lead the Sabres rebuild? Sound off in the comments.

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